Image by Ayo Ogunseinde/Unsplash

Shampoo and me? We have the ultimate kind of love/hate relationship. The reason why is multi-layered.

The main issue is this. Since I grew up using shampoo, when the whole co-wash movement became popular, I found myself super-conflicted. On one hand, since my hair tends to be drier than not, it made perfect sense that I should consider washing with conditioner instead of shampoo. For me, the conflict was since (sometimes) I use a lot of product (more styling creams and gels than anything else), washing my hair with only conditioners didn’t seem to get my tresses clean enough.

So begins the experimentation

I tried washing my hair with baking soda a couple of times. Eh. There were a few paraben-free shampoos that worked OK (one that immediately comes to mind is Auntie Jackie’s Oh So Clean! Moisturizing and Softening Shampoo). But I couldn’t seem to find the kind of shampoo that didn’t make my hair look and feel like it needed a few days—if not an entire week—to recover after, well, washing it. It still seemed kind of dry and it didn’t have much volume either (my hair is mostly 4a and pretty thick).

I did some online researching and discovered that one of the reasons why my hair probably wasn’t as soft, moisturized, and full as I preferred was because I needed to do some pre-pooing/reverse washing. If you’ve never done it before, it’s basically the practice of coating the cuticles of your hair with an oil like coconut or castor or with conditioner before washing your hair (look at it basically like putting on a primer for your hair). That actually made a world of difference!

The other thing I did was look for the kind of shampoo that would give me what I thought my hair was lacking after washing it. In walks Renpure’s Extra Strength Biotin & Collagen Thickening Shampoo (for the record, it contains no sulfates, parabens, dyes, or other stuff that is really not good for our hair).

If there are two things that our hair needs, it’s biotin and collagen. Biotin helps our bodies to build protein. Collagen contains antioxidants that fight off free radicals while also strengthening our hair follicles.

Love at first lather

From the first time I tried the shampoo, I immediately fell in love with the lather it gave me (I know you don’t need lather for shampoos to work; it’s just a personal preference). Also, you know how some shampoos make you feel like you need to apply it 2-3 times? For me, this one didn’t. More times than not, once has been more than enough.

After washing my hair (the first couple of times, I didn’t do any pre-pooing/reverse washing), my hair felt so manageable that I almost talked myself out of conditioning it (almost but not quite).

Fullness: Hair and wallet

I also noticed that once I blow-dried my hair, it did seem a bit fuller; not thicker but just…“fluffier” is the word that comes to mind (some critics of the brand claim this is impossible but whatever).

Of course, another major selling point is that it’s affordable (one bottle should cost around $7). Plus, if you’re like me and you only wash your hair on a bi-weekly basis, a bottle should last you about six months.

I promise you, it’s taken me about 5-6 years to find a shampoo that I—meaning my hair—can feel good about. Finally—and thankfully—I have. Renpure is some good stuff. No doubt about it.